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Dozens of volunteers came together to rescue a beached pilot whale in Nova Scotia on New Year’s Day – responding to calls for help spread via social media.

Nearly 100 locals braved the cold, wet day at Rainbow Haven Beach – a popular summer destination just outside of Dartmouth. 

Volunteers included animal aid workers, firefighters, surfers, and others residents.

‘Unusual’ circumstances

In a race against the clock as low-tide approached, the group heaved the whale back into the icy water, under the supervision of the Marine Animal Response Society [MARS].

MARS representative, Andrew Reid, told CTV it’s ‘unusual’ to find a pilot whale alone, and that they’re an ‘extremely social species’.

After observing the whale’s condition, he believed it best to ‘refloat’, in hopes of reconnecting the animal with his/her pod.

‘No doubt’

A paddle boarder and surfer stayed behind to watch over the whale. 

The surfer, Todd King, followed the animal for quite some time – later taking to Facebook to share his experience.

He wrote: “There is no doubt in my mind that the whale knew we were there to help… He swam away with purpose so I’m hoping he did reconnect with his family.”

Emily Court

Emily Court is a writer and content creator published in Plant Based News, Raise Vegan, Living Vegan and The Financial Diet. A self-described "recovering vegan hothead," she is now a pragmatic member of Vancouver's vibrant and growing plant-powered community. Hailing from Halifax, Nova Scotia, she holds a BA in Spanish and certificate in Intercultural Communication from Dalhousie University, where her thesis focused on topics of cultural and gender-based discrimination. She aims to apply a privilege-conscious...